Today I want to share a simple way to add more fiber, omega-3s, antioxidants, and protein to your diet. The benefits are all wrapped in a little seed called "chia."
My guess is that you first heard about these seeds from an advertisement for cute-looking chia pets
Today we're not talking about Chia Pets though.
We're talking about an easy solution for you to get a powerhouse of nutrients into your diet with very little effort.
For many years, the Mayans and Aztecs used these seeds as is an excellent source of energy.
Chia seeds are a complete protein, containing all nine essential amino acids that our bodies cannot produce.
It is said to have the highest omega-3 content of any plant-based source.
Their antioxidant content is even higher than a cup of blueberries.
High in fiber, chia seeds are easily digested. Diabetics use them to help stabilize blood sugar because they slow down the rate at which complex carbohydrates are digested and then assimilated into the body.
I used to add a tablespoon or two of dry chia seeds to my smoothies, but now that I've been doing more green juicing, I drink them as a gel-like substance once they've absorbed some water.
Here's how the two minutes (or less) of preparation goes:
- Fill a quart jar with filtered water.
- Add 6 tablespoons of chia seeds.
- Stir or shake. Let sit for 8-12 hours.
- Shake again.
- Pour yourself a small glass of chia gel (I usually drink 3-4 ounces/day).
Even when we head out of town for a few days, I like to take along a jar of my chia seed gel.
It's a tasteless treat and is quite filling so it helps keep away the sugar cravings.
Costco sells a bag of Chia for a great price (two pounds for around $7-8 I think).
Other common uses for dry Chia seeds:
- sprinkle on salads
- add to smoothies
- add to salsa to keep it from being watery (chia seeds absorb up to 20 times their weight in water)
- add 2 tablespoons to your favorite juice, allow to gel for about ten minutes, and enjoy a drink called "Chia Fresca"
- make a healthy chocolate pudding from chia seeds